The Old Opera House Theatre Company in Charles Town celebrates a milestone.
FOR 50 YEARS, the residents of Charles Town and the surrounding Eastern Panhandle communities have been entertained with live theatrical performances, music, and ballets at the Old Opera House in downtown Charles Town. These performances are the product of the tireless work and dedication of the Old Opera House Theatre Company.
Incorporated in 1973, the OOHTC has been dedicated to championing the arts in the community with a mission to “excite and involve the community in all aspects of the performing and visual arts.”
Beginning in 1976 with a production of My Fair Lady, the offerings of the theater have grown over the past five decades. The Old Opera House has become a performing arts center that is recognized as one of the most active live performance spaces in the state of West Virginia. Today, the theater presents six main stage productions, a summer youth production, a one-act play festival, and a ballet every year.
In addition to live performances, the Old Opera House operates a performing arts studio that trains young performers in acting, dance, and voice. The Jean Heiler Art Gallery—located on the lower level—showcases some of the area’s most talented visual artists.
“Fifty years is a wonderful milestone for any business but, for a nonprofit that relies heavily on a volunteer workforce, this is especially meaningful,” says Managing and Artistic Director Steven Brewer.
“Organizations like the Old Opera House Theatre Company exist and grow where there is a strong sense of community. So this is one of those special times when we pay tribute to all the performers, patrons, artists, donors, and volunteers that helped the Old Opera House to thrive over the past five decades.”
In celebration of the 50th anniversary season, a Karaoke Kickoff took place in August of 2022. This was followed by an auction fundraiser in October and a Hot Cocoa with Mrs. Claus event in December, in which food and personal care items were collected for the Jefferson County Community Ministries. The 50th anniversary season celebration will wrap up with a black tie gala at the Old Opera House on May 6, 2023. oldoperahouse.org
READ MORE ARTICLES FROM WV LIVING’S SPRING 2023 ISSUE
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